Life's Challenges, Experiences and Blessings
by Marionette Simmons
Trafford Publishing

"Listen quietly as the voice of loneliness speaks
Caught between the four walls with drifting thoughts to seek
Trying to break loose from this non-existent lifestyle
Drifting almost permanently knowing it'll only last a while"

What motivates a person to write poetry? For some the desire is purely monetary, although very few poets are able to make a living practicing their craft. For countless students the impetus is to make a passing grade when asked to compose a sonnet, haiku, or other form of verse. But for some, like the author, their first foray into the world of rhyme and meter may simply be for "fun and laughs." However, over the years what started as simply an amusing hobby for Simmons eventually blossomed into a full-blown passion.

In this short collection of her poems the author focuses almost exclusively on relationships. Broken into four broad categories, she starts out with one of her favorite topics: mothers. Writing a poem dedicated to moms has become a yearly ritual for Simmons, and she has included seven of them in the book for the reader to enjoy. Her section entitled "Expressions" offers a glimpse into some of her deeper musings as they deal with themes like loneliness and confusion, but there always seems to be at least some underlying optimism or positive exhortation even in these less-than-happy pieces. The up-beat nature of her work rises again sharply for the poems included in the "Family Time" section. Even the ones about her time in the hospital have a positive feel to them. Where Simmons poetry truly shines, though, is in the final part, "Time for God," where she shows others her intimate relationship with Christ.

Following in the footsteps of inspirational poets such as Helen Steiner Rice, Simmons writes unpretentious verse that is easy to understand. This is in keeping with what seems to be her overall objective: to bless and encourage her readers.

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